Juvenile and Children's Law Section

This section provides a forum for lawyers who deal with juvenile and children’s law. It produces CLE courses related to this practice area, distributes a newsletter to section members, and works toward improving juvenile justice and children’s law.

Disability Rights Tennessee
2 International Plaza, Suite 825
Nashville, TN 37217

Senators Unveil Criminal Justice Reform Bill

A bipartisan group of U.S. senators unveiled a major criminal justice reform bill today that would reduce mandatory minimum sentences for certain non-violent drug offenses; make crack-cocaine sentencing reductions retroactive; give judges more discretion in sentencing for gun-related crimes; eliminate the so-called "three strikes" law; enhance prisoner rehabilitation and anti-recidivism programs; and largely ban solitary confinement of juveniles. The measure would also create two new mandatory minimums for crimes involving interstate domestic violence and providing weapons to terrorists. The Washington Post reports on the outlook for the bill.

read more »

Congress Expected to Discuss Foster-care System Overhaul

The Crossville Chronicle reports Congress is moving toward an overhaul of the country’s foster-care system and bi-partisan legislation could be presented this fall. Advocates say foster care funds should be going to help biological parents learn to care for children properly, including paying for psychotherapy or treatment for a parent’s addiction issues. "When you ask a child who has been in foster care how we can best improve the current foster-care system, often the answer will be: You could have helped my mom so that I did not have to go into foster care in the first place," Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, said.

read more »